About 3,000 tonnes of operating vehicles are in the Earth's orbits, Head of the information and analytical center at Central Research Institute of Machine Building at the Russian Space Agency Igor Bakaras said
About 3,000 tonnes of operating vehicles and about 7,000 tonnes of space debris are in the Earth's orbits, Head of the information and analytical center at Central Research Institute of Machine Building at the Russian Space Agency (Roscosmos) Igor Bakaras said in an interview with TASS.
"According to various estimates, there are currently about 7,000 tonnes of space debris and 3,000 tonnes of operating spacecraft, including the International Space Station, in near-earth orbits," Bakaras said.
According to him, space debris includes all artificial objects and their fragments in space that do not function and will never be able to serve useful purposes, while being a dangerous factor affecting operating spacecraft.
"On the basis of statistical estimates, it was concluded that the total number of objects of this kind (more than 1 cm in size) is quite uncertain and can reach from hundreds of thousands to a million," Bakaras said, adding that less than 5% of these objects are found, tracked, and cataloged by ground-based radar and optical means.